Kevin Spacey ordered to pay $31m to House of Cards over fraud

US attorney David L Jensen has accused the Oscar-winning actor of ‘continuing the pattern of fabrication and concealment that began with his fabrication of a history of sexual assault’

Kevin Spacey has been ordered to pay $31m (£23m) to the House of Cards studio after being found guilty of fraudulently using a talent agency’s credit card.

The 57-year-old, who won an Oscar for his role in The Usual Suspects in 1995, was ordered by the Los Angeles judge Mark Windham to pay around 10% monthly interest on the $30m loan he made to Spacey’s production company in 2011.

In the afternoon hearing on Thursday, Windham ordered that Spacey’s monthly payment include payments to the Creative Artists Agency, whom he defrauded out of around $6m in January 2017, plus a portion of earnings Spacey made from the final two seasons of House of Cards. He is not obliged to give the studio any profits from the show.

The court order also required Spacey to spend three days a week for two years learning how to administer food stamps to a programme intended for low-income working people.

A film starring Spacey and Christopher Plummer is under way in Malta following his short commitment to make All the Money in the World. The pair were in pre-production on Ridley Scott’s upcoming reimagining of All the Money in the World when Spacey was fired following accusations of sexual assault against him.

Spacey was charged with a felony in October for allegedly sexually assaulting actor Anthony Rapp when he was 14 years old. His next court date in New York has been set for April 18.

The decision to order Spacey to repay the House of Cards studio is the first, and most high-profile, financial settlement of a sexual harassment case filed in California since the #MeToo movement began to gain momentum last year.

Kevin Spacey in a scene from the first season of House of Cards, 2011. Photograph: Netflix

The lawsuit, filed last year by CAA, alleges that Spacey made false representations to use the talent agency’s credit card in order to buy furniture for his apartment in New York. In addition to failing to return the furniture he purchased, Spacey allegedly failed to make the payments, using a credit card purchased for the production company in the name of someone else. The actor had already built up a large debt to other creditors, including a hotel, which his lawyers unsuccessfully argued CAA failed to protect against.

CAA is seeking $30m from Spacey, along with interest on the $6m in false invoices. It argues that Spacey failed to repay his agency for $11m that CAA paid in fees and commission to Spacey’s production company, Trigger Street Productions, between 2011 and 2012. That company was created for the drama House of Cards in which Spacey was the star and executive producer.

Spacey’s lawyers argued in court that the money he spent on the furniture and the false invoices were his “personal expenses”. CAA counters that Spacey failed to return the furniture, which had to be loaned out.

If Spacey does not pay off his debt, he could be subject to further court action. CAA has already moved forward with an internal investigation into its dealings with Spacey.

CAA has also taken the unusual step of releasing a statement regarding its role in the matter. “Kevin Spacey made materially false statements regarding CAA’s role in his purchase of property as well as to CAA’s representation of his finances,” the statement reads. “Due to the seriousness of these allegations, we are no longer representing Kevin Spacey in any capacity.”

Spacey has not yet responded to the court order.

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